If you are in job seeking mode, you should have your LinkedIn profile optimized so that you are ready for “prime time” when a recruiter or hiring manager comes across it.
However, completing your profile is only part of your challenge with LinkedIn. If you want to make the most of your presence there, you must also commit time as a regular user. You should be checking on your Groups and threads of discussions periodically throughout each day. Also, if you want to set yourself apart from the pack, you will want to post periodically on topics that you know well and are pertinent to your profession.
If you are a relatively new user of LinkedIn, you may wonder how often you should check your profile. You may find yourself wondering, how often is often enough? The short answer is at least three times a day: in the morning between 8 and 9; mid-day around lunchtime; toward the end of the day between 4 and 5:30. The rationale is that is that you will likely see updates in your Groups, and new discussions pop up during those specific times. Additionally, it is likely that new job postings will appear during those particular times of the day.
You should definitely join Groups that are relevant to your professional interests. You should also comment on threads of discussion, share articles, and “like” discussions or comments to raise your visibility on LinkedIn. Additionally, if you are a decent writer, I recommend that you post a few times a month to generate discussion and get yourself noticed by those in your specific industry.
Take a moment to endorse those individuals that you know and can easily endorse for a particular skill. Avoid endorsing for skills that you don’t know the individual can do…that cheapens your endorsement and calls your credibility into question…but endorse those individuals that you know for skills you know they have. Why? Through the Law of Reciprocity, individuals who receive an endorsement from you are more likely to offer endorsements in return.
The same rule of thumb goes for offering recommendations. To boost your LinkedIn profile, you should have 2-4 recommendations from co-workers or employers who have worked with you in the past. If you offer a recommendation, it is more likely that you will receive a recommendation from that individual or someone else who knows you.
Keeping your LinkedIn profile up to speed and making sure it is optimized takes time and effort, but the likelihood that it will pay off is well documented. Recruiters are turning to LinkedIn more and more often to find potential recruits. Be careful with your LinkedIn profile just as you would be careful with your resume. Be aware of the “brand” that your profile conveys. And check your profile periodically and regularly with the intention of maintaining a profile that is worthy of a recruiter’s—or a hiring manager’s—attention.
Photo Credit: Shutterstock